Guyrope Gourmet cookbook launches

Published on June 10, 2013

Left: Josh Sutton, aka the Guyrope Gourmet

Josh Sutton, who has written for Great Food Club Magazine in the past, has launched his long-awaited ‘Guyrope Gourmet’ cookbook.

To celebrate, charity The Conservation Volunteers has invited Josh to perform a live cooking demonstration at its Skelton Grange Environment Centre in Leeds on June 11. Both Josh and The Conservation Volunteers share a passion for encouraging people to spend more time outdoors and source ingredients locally so they can create really magical food.

Through its Green Gym movement, The Conservation Volunteers is helping local communities to realise the benefits of growing and cooking with local produce. The Skelton Grange Environment Centre boasts its own vegetable beds and fruit orchards, and is a good example of how local communities can work together to grow a wide variety of fresh produce perfect for outdoors cooking. Here Josh will rustle up paella for local volunteers and visitors, as well as provide his tips on how to cook delicious food in the great outdoors…

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Josh’s (aka the Guyrope Gourmet) top tips…

1. Use home-grown food
“One of the best things about cooking and eating well outdoors is using fresh and local ingredients, which combine to add excitement, adventure and, above all, flavour to a dish. Baby carrots still coated with soil, or lettuce so fresh that the outer leaves have yet to wilt, will always outperform their machine-washed and vacuum-packed mass-produced counterparts.”

2. Find somewhere nearby to source local produce
“Charities like The Conservation Volunteers are helping communities up and down the country to realise the benefits of growing fresh fruit and vegetables. Getting involved with food-growing initiatives through their Green Gym movement can be a great way to get started.

“If you don’t have access to food grown straight from the ground, shopping at the local convenience store is still a good option, and makes a positive contribution to the local community. While it may be lacking in the fresh food department, it’s often capable of coming up trumps. Have a look around, see what’s available and get stuck in.”

3. Make sure the temperature’s right
Portable barbecues are great for cooking fish and burgers and for chargrilling vegetables. For fuel, it’s best to use lump-wood charcoal, which burns better than briquettes and makes less mess. Tempting though it is to throw the food on as soon as possible, make sure you wait until the coals turn grey; a dancing flame will coat your food with foul-tasting soot in a matter of minutes. And finally, remember that burning charcoal gives off carbon monoxide – an odourless, poisonous gas. Food always cooks best over embers.

Guyrope Gourmet – a Camping Cookbook was published in May by Punk Publishing. The book is available to order here.

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Recipe
JoshSutton_Paella

Josh Sutton’s paella

Says Josh: “This is a splendid treat tried and tested on a two ring burn aboard a narrow boat moored on the Grand Union canal.”

2 chicken breasts (free range is always best)
1 large red onion
1 red pepper
3 cloves of garlic finely chopped
1/4 dried chilli finely chopped
Olive oil
Large knob of butter
8oz Bomba or Calasparra paella rice
500 ml of vegetable stock
Fresh milled pepper and salt for seasoning
Half a glass of Manzanilla sherry or very dry white wine
1 tsp paprika (smoked if you got it but don’t worry if not)
3 or 4 large flat mushrooms
Salt and fresh ground black pepper

1. Boil a kettle of water for the vegetable stock.
2. Finely chop the onion and simmer gently for four or five minutes in a glug of olive oil in a high-sided frying pan.
3. Halve, de-seed and slice the pepper. When the onion begins to soften and colour, throw in the chopped garlic, chilli and sliced pepper. Simmer for a further three or four minutes, taking care not to burn the garlic.
4. While that is simmering, chop the mushrooms to 2cm chunks. Melt the knob of butter in the pan and throw in the mushrooms, simmering for a further 5 minutes – the mushrooms will start to wilt in the pan and give off some of their lovely dark brown colour.
5. Cut the chicken into 2cm chunks and add to the pan, making sure the chicken seals on all sides. Then add the teaspoon of smoked paprika and a good grind of black pepper, together with a pinch of salt.
6. Add the rice to the pan and stir well ensuring the rice is well coated. Add the half glass of wine/manzanilla and stir. Pour in the vegetable stock and bring to the boil.
7. Turn to a gentle simmer for twenty minutes or so, or until the rice has absorbed all of the stock.

Matt Wright
The author:

Matt lives in Leicestershire with his wife, two kids and dog. He is passionate about British pubs, slow food and home brewing. He founded Great Food Club (originally as Great Food Magazine) in 2010 after being inspired by local producers near his home town of Melton Mowbray - Britain's 'Rural Capital of Food'.